Roaring applause and cheers of joy echoed throughout the Parker Elementary School cafeteria on Monday as Principal Lori Frodine welcomed students to the first day of school in their new building.
To mark the first day, students gathered by grade level for assemblies in the cafeteria, where Frodine excitedly introduced the students to the new facility and its features and answered their questions.
“You guys have the coolest music rooms ever,” Frodine said to the eager students seated before her.
Sugary donuts and hot coffee lined blue tables at the front entrance of Kolter Elementary School as students, faculty, and parents covered their hands with bright-colored paint and marked the building’s exterior with vibrant handprints.
The festivities were part of a “Donuts before Demo” event designed to allow hundreds of community members the chance to say goodbye to their beloved building, which is being demolished and rebuilt due to damages sustained from Hurricane Harvey.
“It’s exciting,” Kolter Principal Julie Dickinson said, smiling. “Although initial circumstances weren’t ideal, we’re getting a new building. It’s worth the wait.”
The Houston Independent School District is hosting several school choice fairs across the district to inform parents of the different educational choices available to their children as they transition into middle and high school.
“HISD offers excellent opportunities to meet your child’s needs, challenge their thinking, and develop their skills,” said Dave Wheat, HISD assistant superintendent for school choice. “But most importantly, we prepare them for success in college and their careers.”
HISD’s first ever Mandarin Chinese Language Immersion Magnet School will open in time for the 2012-2013 school year. It will be located at 6300 Avenue B in Bellaire and will initially serve students in the early elementary school grades, with additional grades to be added in subsequent years.
HISD Trustee Harvin Moore, who took the lead in proposing the new school, said it will serve students from throughout the city. “This is a program for everyone,” Moore said, adding that such programs in other U.S. cities have drawn heavy interest from families of all racial and ethnic backgrounds.
Mandarin Chinese is the most spoken language in the world and Texas trade with China has increased more than 600 percent over the past decade. Texas is second only to California among states that do the most business with China.
National leaders in Chinese language and culture education recently visited HISD to discuss the district’s plan to expand programs that teach Chinese language and culture.
Applications are currently being accepted for Pre-K, Kindergarten, first, and second grades for the 2012–2013 school year. Click here for Magnet applications and submit a completed application to the Office of School Choice located at the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center. 4400 West 18th St. Houston, Texas 77092. Telephone: 713-556-6947